We had a very powerful word last Sunday from Rick Ciaramitaro. He challenged us with the possibilities of living a victorious Christian life through being a grateful and a thankful person. Both of those are ingredients that invite God’s glorious presence into our lives. The will of God for you and I is to “give thanks in everything; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” I Thes. 5:18. The best way we can pray is to begin with worship and thanksgiving to God. “In everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God.” Philippians 4:6
So many of us pray our petitions with feelings of anxiety and worry instead of practicing thankfulness and rejoicing in the Lord first. We can draw in God’s presence so much more quickly when we invite Him in through praise and thanksgiving. (Psalm 100:4) “Enter His gates with thanksgiving, and into His courts with praise; Be thankful to Him and bless His name.” (vs 5) We praise and thank Him because “The Lord is good, His mercy is everlasting, and His truth endures to all generations.” This is the Christian anthem! The New Testament word for thankful is “grace.” Hence, this is where our table grace comes when we offer thanks for our food.
Must not murmur or complain! There is probably not any attitude worse than murmuring or grumbling and complaining that can quench the Holy Spirit in our lives any quicker than these! Why? Because the nature of Satan and demons is total negativity and evil anger against God. He hates to see praise, worship and thanksgiving being offered to God. The word of God teaches us to have an attitude of gratitude! This is God’s will for us all. Old Testament Israel provoked God to anger with their complaining and negative spirit. Psalms 106:29 “...and the plague broke out among them.” The New Testament admonishes us to “not complain as Israel did.” I Cor. 10:10
We can ask God to make us more conscious of becoming a praiser, a rejoicer, and a more grateful Christian, which will invite more of His presence and draw people toward the Christ they see in us. It is called the “glory of God in us.” (Ephesians 1:12) Enjoy a blessed spring!
- Pastor Virgil Amundson